with Horse and Hound

Excerpt from “Reynard the Fox”

john masefieldThis joyful image of foxhounds arriving at the meet, conscious all the while of the attentive whipper-in, is an excerpt from the chapter, Hounds, in John Masefield’s epic poem, Reynard the Fox, written in 1919. John Masefield was Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom from 1930 to 1967. [Note: Dansey is the whipper-in, and Maroon is his horse.]

There was a general turn of faces,
The men and horses shifted places,
And around the corner came the hunt,
Those feathery things, the hounds, in front,
Intent, wise, dipping, trotting, straying,
Smiling at people, shoving, playing,
Nosing to children’s faces, waving
Their feathery sterns, and all behaving,
One eye to Dansey on Maroon.

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